Phil Davis (Jed)

Veteran actor Phil Davis has been in a whole host of shows including Bleak House, Poldark, Being Human, Silk, Doctor Who, Sherlock and Whitechapel and now adds Dial M For Middlesbrough to his impressive TV CV.

Phil Davis (Jed)

What drew you to Dial M for Middlesbrough?

It's just really funny. When I read it, it made me chortle a lot. It's an Agatha Christie spoof. In Agatha Christie, it would be set in a country house, but in ours it's set in a caravan park no one can escape from! It's an ensemble piece and a really nice cast. I was very happy to come on board.

How would you describe your character?

Jed is the owner of the caravan park and is a very slippery customer. He's happy to rip everyone off. He is overcharging for everything. He affects an air of being sophisticated and urbane, but that is a long way from the truth.

How does Jed feel when the coach pulls up at his caravan park?

For him, the coach is just full of more victims he can make money out of. Then the dead bodies start cropping up, which is not so good for business

What happens next?

Jed is keen to get the dead bodies dealt with very quickly, but circumstances soon take over. There are lots of floods in the area, so the cops can't come out to investigate. They are stuck there wondering who's going to be the next victim. All the people left in the caravan park start to look at each other nervously. They know it's going to be one of them, because no one else is there.

Why does the caravan park work so well as a setting for Dial M for Middlesbrough?

Because it's seedy and nothing works. When new guests arrive, Jed tells them, "You're in luck. We have just had the toilets re-sealed and now they work ... mostly." That setting is very appropriate for the house style.

Why do we adore whodunnits?

We've always loved crime dramas. They are inherently dramatic - who did it and who's going to be next? Most drama shows on TV are to do with crime. What's nice about this is that it's done as a spoof. You have a lot of spoof horror films, but not many spoof crime dramas.

How would you describe the style of Dial M for Middlesbrough?

It's very funny and very broad. Subtlety is not something you have to go in for. As actors, we are encouraged to spread our wings. We can be as large and cartoonish as we like. There is something really refreshing about that.

Why is it apt that this is going out at Christmas?

Comedy Christmas specials are always a joy. People really enjoy them. You can sit down as a family to watch this. There is nothing there to scare the children. It's great fun family entertainment.

What do you hope the viewers' response to Dial M for Middlesbrough will be?

I hope people will be really entertained. I think it will raise lots of laughter. If we achieve that, we will have succeeded. I hope people will all be spilling their tea because they're laughing so much!